Sky Bet Championship new boys Preston North End have taken the second tier by storm in recent weeks under manager Simon Grayson, and now find themselves in a strong position where they could mount a late challenge for a top six spot.
The question now however, is does Simon Grayson deserve to be awarded with the Championship manager of the season title?
The Lilyewhites were promoted from League One last season and have enjoyed their first season back in the Championship on a shoe-string budget, spending a minuscule amount of money throughout both transfer windows.
One of their most high profile acquisitions in January was former Manchester United goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard on loan from West Brom, which demonstrates the club’s long-term vision and ambition.
Grayson was appointed Preston head coach back in February 2013 taking over from current Peterborough boss Graham Westley, after North End languished in 17th, eight points above fourth-bottom.
Since Grayson’s appointment has featured a remarkable turnaround and they were promoted from League One last season.
The club have taken 20 points out of a possible 33, after winning seven out of their last 11 games and are unbeaten in their last four league games, and therefore sit in an impressive ninth place, just six points off Derby in the final play-off place.
When comparing Preston’s situation with the two other promoted teams, MK Dons are currently languishing in 21st place and are six points from drop, whilst League One Champions Bristol City sit two points ahead of MK Dons in 20th.
Next up for Preston however is Cardiff City, who showed their class last Saturday putting four past Brighton although were beaten at the hands of Middlesbrough, on Tuesday and will be looking to bounce back.
The 46-year-old has previously coached Blackpool, Leeds and Huddersfield and has managed to show the big spending sides that great team spirit goes a long way.
Whether or not Grayson will be awarded with the award is yet to be seen, however in my opinion, Simon Grayson should be awarded Championship manager of the year.
Preston fans… Do you agree? Should Simon Grayson win Championship manager of the year? Who else could be in contention? Let us know your thoughts and opinions below!